I frequently refer to "The Long March Through the Institutions", a phrase variously attributed to Antonio Gramsci, Rudi Dutschke, and possibly others who wished to establish Marxism (communism, socialism, 'progressivism' and all the other illiberal-isms) to replace classical liberalism as the dominant social and cultural norm.
Antonio Gramsci was a socialist around the turn of the 20th century. He said Americans would never accept socialism in a full frontal assault. We'd reject it. He said socialists would have to embark on "a long march through the institutions", to infiltrate the schools, the media, the churches, the bureaucracies, the unions and so on. They did that, and 100 years later, here we are, as evidenced by the 2012 election, which I believe would have been a landslide repudiation of Barack Obama a mere 20 years ago.
The long socialist march through the institutions is complete, especially in the schools and in the media. The unions didn't need much infiltration, because they already had an entitlement mentality. The churches were tougher, because they actually taught virtue as their primary mission, but the socialists have at least managed to marginalize religion in public, and convince the faithful to ignore politics as a worldly, secular thing -- so they don't vote in numbers large enough to matter.
If we classical liberals want this country back, we are going to have to start our own long march through the institutions. We'll have to take the long view. It could take 100 years. It will require patience and perseverance. If we lose our focus, we'll lose. But as I see it, that's the only way out. I have been in denial since Ronald Reagan left office. The 2012 election jarred me back to reality, and reality bites.
It won't be enough to home school our kids, or to establish charter schools. Public schools, state universities and the Ivy League are the mainstream, and we have to infiltrate them, despite the fact that their current power structure is overtly hostile to our world view. That is precisely what Gramsci suggested, and it is precisely what we must do. It will be difficult. It will be slow.
|Liberty is maximized when self-determination rules. Too far left or too far right is oppressive. (Not to scale.)|
We have to be audacious, and keep flinging classical liberal principles at the wall, knowing that they probably won't stick at first. But we have to keep throwing them up there faster than the socialists can scrape them off. In so doing, we will gradually move the window of acceptability back towards the center, where it belongs. That is precisely what the left have been doing (toward the left) for at least 50 years -- have you noticed? Audacity! The best defense is a good offense. It is the only thing that works, but it takes patience.
Now... how do we infiltrate the institutions and begin our march? I don't know yet. But I do know that people by their very nature, just want to be free. This should be an easier sell than socialism. We are the new anti-establishment! Let's roll!